Today is my birthday. Which means another year of my life has gone in the record books. I’d have to say it’s been a very good one. Ten years ago if you would have told me I would be living aboard a boat and taking each day as it comes, on the East Coast instead of the Gulf, in Chacos instead of dress shoes, not concerned about the color of the year, not checking the numbers, not working the buys, I would have said you were looking at someone else’s crystal ball. But here I am. Saltier than I was on my last birthday, sporting gray hair and new age spots and reflecting on all the blessings this adventure has afforded me.
Just like learning a new skill has it’s challenges, retirement also has to be learned. At least for me it did. I love the mornings, lazy, slow, no stress. But come 10 o’clock or so I find myself getting antsy to be somewhere, see someone, create something. So if I haven’t already done so that’s when I get busy walking (I like to average at least 100 miles a month) or get busy cleaning (on a boat there is no lack of places needing to be scrubbed). Somehow in retirement those small projects seem to expand to fill most of the day.
On cruising days I have a set routine. I spend the first hour of the day being certain the day’s menu items are iced down in the day-cooler for quick and easy access and not in the fridge so I don’t open it while cruising since the power won’t be on. I prepare the flybridge by taking camera, binoculars, cruising guide, pens and pencils, paper charts, street maps, phone chargers, earbuds, solar chargers, coozie cups, sunscreen, bug spray, (I’m sure I forgot something) all up to the helm so they are accessible while we are underway. Down below there are things to be secured and stowed even for the shortest excursions because one boat wake from a go-fast-hot-head can rock our world and break the dishes.
Once underway you just settle in. Life at seven knots will help you do that. Nothing happens quickly. You learn to be present in the moment. Take in your surroundings. Get on plane and keep it between the navigational beacons. Notice things. Enjoy!